Thanks to the popularity of big-name DJs like Girl Talk and the White Panda, mashups are widely heard even outside of the "Remix, Bro" themed parties found at frat houses. Although these songs feature a multitude of genres seamlessly blended, country is rarely featured. Cotton Eye Joe may be the closest thing to techno-country that folks have heard of nowadays.
Enter Dee Jay Silver, a born-and-raised Texan who brings songs by current artists like Chris Young and Carrie Underwood to the mashup table. This cowboy DJ is currently touring with Jason Aldean, who performed in West Palm Beach on Sunday. He talked to us about the importance of mixing all types of music, his favorite artists, and what it's like partying with his touring partner.
New Times: So what's it like touring with Jason Aldean?
Dee Jay Silver: Awesome. He's such a rock star. He comes out and parties every night. I'm proud of the guy. He gets bigger and bigger every day.
Do you ever party with him?
Oh, yeah, probably a little too much.
He must be fun to go out with.
Yeah, but I like to say that I'm the fun one. [laughs]
How did you get started doing mashups?
We mixed in country and had to take it out after a short bit [at previous DJ gigs]; now we leave it in. I play both house and country. I know that's weird. I know where I came from; I'm a true Southerner.
Where are you from?
Austin, Texas. 100 percent pure Texan. [laughs]
What's the difference between the country music scene in Texas and Florida?
It's the same, very electic. People don't listen to just country; they listen to all types of music. It makes my job easier, because I can put anything in there. It's all mixed together.
Why is it so important to intersect different genres of music?
The generation that we are in grew up with Dr. Dre and Eminem and were around those who grew up with artists like Lynyrd Skynyrd. If you put on someone's iPod, you're going to see a huge mix. Every good DJ should be able to play all genres of music together. Everyone in the Jason Aldean crowd listens to everything, a whole mix of music.
So if we were to go into your iPod right now, what songs might we be surprised to find?
I love Bruno Mars' "If I Were Your Man." That is one of the best songs out.
It takes a real man to admit that!
It does! I just appreciate good music. Period.
What are your two favorite types of genres to mix?
Electro and country. I just did a mix of Chris Young's "Awnaw" with an electro background.
Name some of your favorite country artists.
Jason Aldean, Luke Bryan, Florida Georgia Line, Jake Owen... Tell me when to stop [laughs]. Country is great music with great people.
Who are some of your favorite mashup artists?
DJ Scribble, DJ Vice, DJ D Trip.
DJ D Trip?
Yeah! He's like Girl Talk on crack. Check out his first album. It's the best CD ever. Guarantee it.